MATCH VERDICT: KIng's Lynn 1-1 FC Halifax Town

Lewis Mansell's debut goal earned FC Halifax Town a hard-earned point as they drew 1-1 at King's Lynn.

Saturday, 9th January 2021, 5:20 pm
King's Lynn v FC Halifax Town

Alex Kiwomya, whose dad Andy played for Halifax, marked his debut with a goal which put the hosts in-front at half-time.

But Town battled back to move back up into the play-off places. And a draw was probably about right, with neither side quite doing enough to win it.

Jeff King could have put Town ahead after just four minutes when he was found in acres of space on the right, but keeper Archie Mair saved his shot, and Alex Brown blocked the follow-up.

Sign up to our daily Halifax Courier Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Despite the skewed wisdom of using a white ball in foggy conditions, that heralded a strong start by the visitors, who penned King's Lynn back inside their own half. On FA Cup third round weekend, the game had the feel of a higher-league side visiting a non-league team at times.

King's Lynn were hurried and harried, while Town popped the ball about with assurance, no-one more so that Luke Summerfield, with Martin Woods also impressing alongside him.

Debutants Jean Belehouane and Mansell were both keen to get on the ball and showed decent composure when they did.

Town's passing was crisp and their movement was fluid. Their possession was bordering on dominance, but the only gripe was that it hadn't been translated into chances.

Billy Chadwick and Mansell hadn't seen any of the ball in the King's Lynn box, and were put under pressure by the home defence whenever they received possession.

The majority of Town's play had been in-front of King's Lynn rather than in-behind them.

Woods and Summerfield had both fired off target from range, but other than King's early chance, that was about it.

With half-time approaching, former Town striker Dayle Southwell sneaked down the side of a static Town defence and his cross was smashed home by Kiwomya from 12 yards.

It was harsh on Town. King's Lynn had come more into the game a few minutes before the goal, but hardly enough to warrant the lead.

But for their goal they had managed to get through and round the back of the Town defence, showing the kind of penetration The Shaymen, for all their possession, simply hadn't produced.

But after Michael Gash fired wastefully over at one end, Mnasell headed Town level from King's dinked cross.

It was now a more open contest, with King's Lynn giving as good as they got, with Simon Power and Jack Earing off target from range at either end as the fog seemed to envelop the pitch. You presumed the players could see more than those in the stands.

What bits of the game were visible were competitive and hard-fought, but still there were few chances, with both teams lacking enough quality in the final third.

Substitute Sonny Carey hit the post shortly after coming on, before fellow sub Adam Marriott's follow-up was ruled out for offside.

Then it was Carey's turn to see a goal chalked off for offside as the hosts pressed for a winner.

Town had switched to a back-four but looked creaky when King's Lynn attacked them, although Chadwick then spurned a glorious chance one-on-one at an angle when he fired wide.

King's Lynn: Mair, Brown, Callan-McFadden, Smith, Richards, Barrows, Power Mitchell 78), Jarvis, Kiwomya (Carey 70), Southwell (Marriott 70), Gash. Subs not used: McAuley, Clunan.

Scorers: Kiwomya (38)

Shots on target: 1

Shots off target: 6

Corners: 5

Halifax: Johnson, Belehouane (Senior 65), Maher, Bradbury, King, Summerfield, Woods (Green 52), Williams, Earing, Mansell (Allen 75), Chadwick. Subs not used: Davison-Hale, Danns.

Scorers: Bradbury (51)

Shots on target: 3

Shots off target: 9

Corners: 6

Referee: Gareth Rhodes

Town man of the match: Luke Summerfield. His by now customary display of composure, commitment and quality on the ball.